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Watching Dwayne Haskins and Case Keenum, one quarterback definitely stands out

Watching Dwayne Haskins and Case Keenum, one quarterback definitely stands out

The Redskins might be just in the beginning of a quarterback battle, but at Monday's OTA session, it seemed pretty clear which player would eventually win. 

Dwayne Haskins made a number of impressive throws while he was on the field, and while Case Keenum had his share of good passes too, the rookie shined. Even on the surface: Haskins looks the part of a franchise quarterback, standing 6-foot-3 and 230 lbs. Keenum is listed at 6-foot-1 and 215 lbs, but that seems fairly generous. 

When Haskins throws the ball, it zips through the air. He can go deep and has touch on his underneath routes. Keenum gets the ball where it needs to be, but there's a difference in velocity. 

Let's be crystal clear, however, that one OTA session in May will not determine the starting quarterback job. While Keenum and Haskins are both learning the Redskins offense, Keenum has proved he can stand in the pocket of an NFL game and make plays. Haskins has never seen the size or speed of NFL defensive linemen. 

"It’s a long process and I think they both handled it well today," Redskins head coach Jay Gruden said. "Hopefully we’ll do better tomorrow and the next day and so on and so forth and I’m sure it will be a good, lengthy competition with some great players going at it."

A few, unexpected things stood out with Haskins.

Though he has a long windup on his throws, the ball gets out plenty fast. He also seemed quicker in the pocket than some of his NFL Scouting Combine numbers would suggest. Haskins certainly isn't fast, but he's not a plodder either. That said, Keenum does seem to have the advantage in squirting through the line of scrimmage and keeping plays alive. That's something Gruden really likes in his passers.

Both of the QBs seemed comfortable with their role in the competition. 

"It’s normal. I compete every day whether I’m playing football, playing ping pong, playing golf, I’m competing. I’m competing against myself. I’m competing against the defense. In the quarterback room, we’re always competing," Keenum said. "Competition makes you better and that’s what the spring is about."

Haskins sounded very tactful in his responses; respectful of the veterans already on the team in Keenum and Colt McCoy, yet also eager to get more work.

"I want to be with the best, be around the best, and compete with the best. All season I’ll be around working out with the best quarterbacks on my team," the rookie said. 

Planned or not, Haskins also seemed modest in his goals for the OTA session. 

"I didn’t have any expectations for today, I just wanted to execute. The biggest thing for me was going to play right in the huddle."

That stands out in stark contrast to the Redskins last first-round rookie passer, Robert Griffin III. Expectations for RG3 were out of control, almost immediately, and while parts of his rookie season actually lived up to the hype, that situation was not healthy or sustainable. It's smart for Haskins to set reasonable goals at this stage of his career. Calling plays correctly in the huddle will get him on the field more, and that will give him more chances to make big plays.

It's a learning process, and at OTAs, Haskins showed a willingness to start on the ground floor. In a world of egos and branding, that's a sage move. 

While McCoy was not present on the field at OTAs, he is in Ashburn. He will be a part of this competition, but he needs to get healthy soon. Gruden didn't provide much of an update when asked about McCoy, though the coach did say the quarterback should be back on the field for training camp.

McCoy knows the Redskins offense backward and forward, but without him on the field, Keenum and Haskins are learning the Redskins plays at the same time. And that means while Gruden is looking at a rookie and a veteran, neither player has much of a leg up on his playbook. 

"I think we have to grade them based on production out here every day. Every day is a new grade, every day you see how they’re developing, see how they’re getting better, see if they’re making the same mistakes over and over. But it’s a process, this is the first time Dwyane has had a chance to call plays in a live huddle and go after a live defense and this is the first time Case has had a chance to do that with the Redskins terminology. So, we don’t expect perfection on the day one, but we do expect the guys to know what they’re doing when we go out to the practice field, execute and then continue to get better each and every day."

Get better each day. Compete. That's the cornerstone of success in the NFL, and for the Redskins, how QB1 will find his spot.

"Somebody is going to rise I would think," the coach said. "The cream always rises to the top and we’re hoping that’s the case.”

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A timeline of Jordan Reed's concussion, injury history

A timeline of Jordan Reed's concussion, injury history

Redskins tight end Jordan Reed is one of the most dynamic players in the NFL at his position when he's on the field.

The problem is, Reed just can't stay healthy. The 29-year-old has missed the Redskins' first two games of 2019 and already been ruled out for Monday's contest against the Bears, as he continues to recover from a concussion he suffered August 22 vs. Atlanta.

On Sunday, ESPN's Adam Schefter reported that Reed's playing career could be in jeopardy, as he has struggled to recover from his latest concussion.

Here's a timeline of Reed's concussion and injury history, dating back to his college days as a Florida Gator. 

November 2010: In his freshman year at Florida, Reed suffered his first documented concussion in a 31-7 loss to Florida State. He returned for the team's bowl game vs. Penn State on Jan. 1, 2011.

October 2011: Reed suffered a concussion at some point during the 2011 season, but did not appear to miss any games due to the injury.

September 2012: The tight end suffers his third concussion in college, but did not miss any games for the Gators. Reed returned to action after the bye week. 

November 2013: As a rookie, Reed suffered a concussion against the Philadelphia Eagles. He would not return at any point later in the season, landing on injured reserve. He became close to returning multiple times, but the symptoms kept returning. 

September 2014: In Washington's season opener, Reed pulled his hamstring against Houston. The injury would force him to miss the next four weeks.

November 2014: Reed re-injuries his hamstring in a 27-7 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He would miss the following week with the injury.

October 2015: In a Week 4 clash with the Eagles, Reed suffered multiple injuries, including his fifth documented concussion. He left the game originally with an ankle injury, returned, then suffered the concussion. He would miss the Redskins next two games.

October 2016: In a Week 5 matchup vs. Baltimore, Reed suffered his sixth documented concussion. He initially tried to play through the injury, but entered the protocol following the game. He would miss the team's next two games. 

November 2016: In a Thanksgiving clash with Dallas, Reed suffered a Grade 3 separation in his shoulder. While the tight end would finish the game (and score two touchdowns), he would miss two of the team's next four games with the injury.

September 2017: Reed suffered a chest injury against the Rams, missing the Redskins Week 3 contest vs. Oakland the following week.

October 2017: A hamstring injury Reed suffered against the Cowboys in Week 8 would eventually put Reed on IR, costing him the team's final nine games of the season.

December 2018: Reed would suffer a toe strain against the Giants in Week 14. The tight end would miss Washington's final three games of the season.

August 2019: In the team's third preseason game, Reed suffered the seventh documented concussion of his football career after being struck by Falcons' safety Keanu Neal. He has missed the Redskins first three games of the 2019 season and counting.

Source: Sports Injury Predictor

Monday's contest against the Bears will mark the 34th time during Reed's NFL tenure that he will be unable to play due to injury. 

If, and when Reed will suit up next for the Redskins seems more uncertain than ever.

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Jordan Reed’s NFL future reportedly uncertain as concussion issues continue

Jordan Reed’s NFL future reportedly uncertain as concussion issues continue

Redskins tight end Jordan Reed was ruled out for Monday night's contest with the Chicago Bears on Saturday, as he continues to recover from a concussion suffered in Week 3 of the preseason.

Now, more reports are coming out about Reed's status. Not just for the upcoming game, but for his future in the NFL.

Currently trying to come back from his seventh recorded concussion dating back to his college football days, there is now uncertainty surrounding the continuation of his NFL career, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter.

The seventh-year veteran's history with injuries is a long one. Despite showing flashes of dominance throughout his time with the Redskins, Reed has still not been able to put together a full season with no missed time. 

At his best, he's shown that he can be a reliable and explosive target for his quarterbacks. In 14 games in 2015 (his most played in a single season) he compiled 87 receptions for 952 yards and 11 touchdowns. But, both concussions, as well as nagging issues in other areas, have limited him to just 19 games throughout the 2017 and 2018 seasons and left the Redskins offense without a crucial piece.

As Reed continues to go through concussion protocol, updates about his status will be hard to come by. Back in Week 1, it looked as if the tight end would be back on the field soon, but it seems as if setbacks have clouded the timeline. 

Head injuries are serious, and if Reed's most recent concussion continues to cause problems, it looks as if a decision about his career could come to the forefront. 

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